Research


New York State Department of Correctional Services Attica Task Force Draft Report

Held by the New York State Archives


Overview of the Records

Repository:

New York State Archives

New York State Education Department

Cultural Education Center

Albany, NY 12230

Summary:
This series consists of a draft report created in September 2003 by the Attica Task Force. Based on petitions from the Forgotten Victims of Attica (FVOA) group, the report addresses compensation for employee injuries and deaths from the Attica Correctional Facility riot of 1971; right to conduct an annual memorial service on Attica grounds; counseling for those involved in the riot and retaking of the facility; opening of the state's records to public scrutiny; and an apology from the state.
Creator:
Title:
Quantity:
0.25 cubic feet
Inclusive Dates:
2003
Series Number:
B2364

Administrative History

In March 2001 Governor George Pataki appointed the Attica Task Force to investigate issues raised by The Forgotten Victims of Attica (FVOA) and to make recommendations based on the task force's findings. The task force consisted of Chairman Glenn S. Goord, Commissioner of the Department of Correctional Services; New York State Senator, 59th District, Dale M. Volker; and Deputy Assembly Speaker Arthur O. Eve. Assembly Member, 35th District, Jeffrion Aubry (chair of the Corrections Committee) also sat in on the hearings. The FVOA had recommended that independent persons be appointed to the fact-finding panel, but none were appointed.

The Attica group, FVOA, composed of former hostages and their survivors, had asked to be compensated for the state government's role in the September 9, 1971 prison uprising, in which dozens of correction officers and civilian employees were taken hostage before State Troopers retook the prison four days later. The final death toll was 32 inmates and 11 prison employees. Many others were seriously injured.

In January 2000, after years of litigation, the state agreed to a $12 million settlement, of which $8 million went to compensate inmates and relatives for the abuse that the prisoners suffered, and $4 million went for lawyers' fees. But nearly all the prison employees and their families had unknowingly forfeited their legal right to sue the state shortly after the uprising as a condition of receiving workers' compensation for their losses.

In May-August of 2002 the task force held six days of public hearings in Rochester and Albany to hear testimony from many of the former hostages and their survivors.

Scope and Content Note

This series consists of a draft of a 23-page report created in September 2003 by the Attica Task Force, produced at the direction of Governor George E. Pataki. Members of the media obtained a copy of this draft report before it was finalized, and disseminated it to the wider public. Based on petitions from the Forgotten Victims of Attica (FVOA) group, the report addresses five large issues of concern stemming from the Attica Correctional Facility riots of 1971: compensation for employee injuries and deaths from the riot; right to conduct an annual memorial service on Attica grounds; counseling for those involved in the riot and retaking of the facility; opening of the state's records to public scrutiny; and an apology from the state.

The task force conducted public hearings in a variety of locations around the state, which it used to make recommendations for the governor to proceed on all five issues. Of note: the draft report includes a list of appendices, but copies of the appendices themselves are not included.

After this draft was made public, there is no evidence that a final report was ever issued. Based on the Attica Task Force's recommendations, in January 2005 Governor Pataki approved a $12 million settlement for deaths and injuries sustained by prison personnel in the Attica riot.

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There are no restrictions regarding access to or use of the material.

Related Information

Related Materials

Series 22425 Attica Task Force minutes of public hearings, contains records of the hearings that led to the creation of the draft report.

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